Friday, April 28, 2006


MoCCA regular Bill Roundy is debuting not one, but TWO mini comics at said event.

From Bill:
It’s a comic book release party for my two new mini-comics: “Man Enough: a queer romance” and the grandiosely-titled “The Amazing Adventures of Bill, vol. 6: Perfect Moment.”

For those of you who fear traveling to Brooklyn, it’s actually going to be in Manhattan! Here are the details:

What: Bill Roundy’s Comic Book Release Party
When: Saturday, April 29, 7pm to 11pm
Where: The Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art
594 Broadway, Fourth Floor.

How much: Free!

There will be beer, and some snacks, and cocktails prepared according to Bill’s Bartending Guide.

I’ll be selling and signing books, and there will be a comic jam for everyone to draw on. And you can look around the Museum, which is showing a retrospective on Todd McFarlane (Spider-Man, Spawn), which should provide an interesting contrast to my sweet little story of gay romance

Directions: Take the F, D, or V train to Broadway-Lafeyette, the R or W train to Prince St., or the 6 train to Bleecker. MoCCA is at 594 Broadway, between Houston and Prince.
Warning: there is no sign outside, and the gallery is on the fourth floor, so you’ll have to look for the street number. If you get lost, call MoCCA at 212-254-3511.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

LA TIMES: Great comic strips aren't built on the backs of aging readers

Click for full story

Comic strips' plight isn't funny
Cartoonists fear that newspapers aren't changing with the times to reach a print-averse younger generation.

By Alex Chun, Special to The Times

IN an upcoming "Opus" Sunday comic strip, Berkeley Breathed's affable waterfowl Opus comes across an iPod-toting twentysomething who has no clue what a newspaper is. In the strip's eight little boxes, Breathed succinctly sums up the plight of not only newspapers but also the comic strips contained therein: They "are trying to reach kids who literally have never picked up a newspaper before," says Breathed, who burst on the national comics scene in 1980 with the cult-classic "Bloom County."

"What can we offer them as 25-year-old new workers that might interest them enough to pick up sheets of paper and examine them for several minutes a day?"

That, Breathed says, is the million-dollar — or million-reader — question facing comic strip creators....


You went to the Rhode Island School of Design, right? What did you learn there that made you a better artist?
Yes, class of 2003 (Go Nads!)  Most of the things that I "learned" while there, I didn't really come to understand or explore until later— I hear that's fairly common (and not exclusive to art school). The most important thing is to be exposed to as many different things as possible, while maintaining a personal focus that grows out of your own interest and passion; that way you don't limit yourself, but also have something to show for your four years at school.  Oh yeah— and life drawing is the best practice.

What did you learn from having David Mazuchelli as a teacher?
He was the first adult (especially in the academic world) to formally recognize the importance and potential of comics.  Completely disregarding my partiality for the subject matter, he was also the best teacher I had at the school.  In fact, I was essentially ignorant of who he was until I was in his class. Although draughtsmanship was not a major component of the class, it was informed, like many aspects of image-making, by his careful, analytical approach to making comics.  My decisions became more considered under his guidance, and my artwork, for the first time, became concerned with more than just perspective and anatomy.

You live with fellow comic artist R. Kikuo Johnson. How does that roommate dynamic work? In terms of feedback for each other?
Um... he doesn't clean bathrooms.  Besides that, he has become one of the biggest influences in my comics life.  His passion for the medium is contagious (and so are his philosophies and tastes).  In a more practical sense, he's always there to bounce ideas off of, he has a vast library of comics that's always at hand, and we tend to use each
other as models.

Your X-Men Mythos already hit stands and you've got a few more coming out as well. What was the biggest obstacle in painting so many characters?
It's technically difficult, and quite time consuming, but most of these characters already exist in my mind in a particular way. When I'm given an assignment, I already have a sense of what, for instance, the Hulk should look and move like.

What's the hardest part about painting for comics?
Wanting to do black and white art, but not being able to... for now.

Regarding your decision to give up oil painting, is this a financial move? A productivity move? A creative one?
There were actually several different reasons for the switch, but I'll readily admit that the financial pressures made it a necessity. I had contemplated it many times, but was never really forced to before. The other reasons range from storage to health issues.  For example, a 23-page comic takes up a lot of room in a Brooklyn apartment if they're each 16" x 24" on hand prepared, heavy wood.  And since I sleep where I paint, I've been breathing some pretty nasty vapors for the past 2 years.

What's the time saved on switching painting styles?
Right now, I'd say it's about half the time, but I'll get even faster as I practice.  This was another major reason for the switch.  I worked pretty hard in 2005, but don't feel like I have anything to show for it.  I made one comic in all of last year and that's not acceptable, creatively.

So then, what's the process on your new style?
Once I've penciled a page out on 8" x 12" bristol board (Strathmore series 500 4-ply), I paint it using black and white Holbein's Acryla Gouache (fancy name for matte acrylic) in a series of nine mixed gray values.  Once finished, I scan it in and color it in Photoshop, using a separate layer set to "color" mode.  This allows the brightness values to show through while changing the hue and saturation of the resultant colors.  To get slightly technical, this means that I don't use pure white since only a gray value, however light, will allow a color to replace it.  For example, in a black and white photograph, the only pure white appears in overexposed areas and some highlights.

How does going to digital color affect your work? Did you have to learn anything new to achieve the desired result?
I think it will have the same general feel as the oil paint, but will reproduce better and, therefore, be much more legible.  I'm actually using many of the same techniques that I utilized to bring my oil paintings to press.  This was yet another reason for the switch: I was spending as much time at the computer (trying to get the paintings to look like faithful reproductions) as I did at the easel.

What will be your first book in this new style?
Mythos: Hulk

Would you rather be a cover artist? Or do you prefer to do interiors?
Cover work is attractive because it is less work (in comparison) and the rewards are often greater, but I actually prefer interiors. They're ridiculously challenging and, ultimately, more fulfilling.

What's the one thing/person that you've had the hardest time capturing in paint?
It's all pretty darn hard.  If I had to narrow it down to a particular subject matter, it might be "large, detailed, interior spaces."  I suppose that covers quite a range of things, but I think that's precisely why it's so difficult.  A big part of this is solved, however, by switching my working methods.  Keeping in mind the "big picture" with regard to color can be difficult when there are more objects in a composition.  By coloring digitally, it's much easier to make things work as a whole while still paying attention to detail, since it's so easy to edit.

What's the most important thing you've learned since entering the comics industry?
Personally, it's that I shouldn't paint comics in oil— a lesson from which I am already reaping the benefits.  In a broader sense, I've learned that composition and gesture are becoming my most important tools for communication in the medium.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

What made the Four Fantastic
There's an intersting article on The Discovery Channel about Gamma Rays.

Monday, April 24, 2006

SVA Mini-Comics Show
I dropped by the Fresh Meat show at SVA on Saturday. The rain kept some people in, but it was a decent enough crowd. I walked away with about $20 worth of min-comics and I know Heidi did the same. Some of my favorites were David McGuire, Hyeondo Park and Yali Lin. I'd mention a whole lot more but these artists don't have Web sites. ? How can you be an artist and not have a portolio site. Ridiculous.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Batman has a Message for You

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Up-and-coming actress Missy Peregrym just visited my office. She's very nice, very personable and great all around. Smallville frans might remember her as Molly Griggs from an episode in season 3. She was also in an episode of Dark Angel.

This month her new movie Stick It comes out this month. Go see for no other reason than that Missy Peregrym is in it.
I'm going to be on Fanboy Radio today

Comic Foundry is a featured guest on today's Fanboy Radio. It's going to be a great show about Self-Publishing. They've got some amazing guests on the show and is definitely a must-listen for anyone looking to do work in comics. I think I'm the last person featured and I ramble on for a bit, but such is life.

Even if you don't listen you should check out their stuff here.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Link Blog!
Very interesting interview with Alexis Siegel at Comic World News on the art of translating comics.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Zine to check out: The Comics Interpreter
Not starring Nicole Kidman.

Check out the site here. Yep, I'm sure this time.

Looks like they might have another issue in the works and go the POD route. If they've got more stuff along the lines of the James Jean and Paul Pope interviews they had in the past, I'm sure they can get enough readers to justify a new book.
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TUTORIAL: Trace and Paint with Illustrator CS2
Computer Arts Magazine over in the UK has great tutorials. Here's one on using Illustrator CS2 to color your comic project.
Check out the very cool step-by-step here.
Best spam email of the week
Subject: From:Mrs.Anna Paquin.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Tranformers Misformed
There's a very interesting piece online from Ping Mag about an art exhibit with disassembled Transformers:

"In Scott Campbell’s studio in Shinjuku are more than a thousand dismantled TransFormers in various states of disrepair. Starting his sculpture series in 1999, the Australian artist re-arranges parts of perfectly functional TransFormers to extremely dis-functional MisFormers. PingMag visited Scott in his studio where he assembles, plans and tweaks those precious sculptures - to find out why."

Check out the examples here.
Superman Easter Eggs
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Because I'm the only member of my family that doesn't live at home, I sometimes get care packages around different holidays. Well well well. I just received a plethora of candy. If you're in NYC and want some, just give me a holler. The coolest thing by far in there are these Superman Easter Eggs. They're obviously a movie tie-in, but still...

Monday, April 10, 2006

Danica Novgorodoff's A LATE FREEZE Wins Isotope Prize

Congrats to Danica, who the won Isotope Award for Excellence in Mini-Comics. In the current issue of Comic Foundry, Danica shared her steps to creating A LATE FREEZE. Danica is also a designer for First Second Books.

Congratulate and buy her book here.


Aguirre-Sacasa: Playwright's Path Is via Comic Books

At the New York Comic-Con in February, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa was treated to an object lesson in fame and anonymity. This 33-year-old comic-book writer went to the Comic-Con, a frenetic three-day orgy of comic books, video games and an appearance by the actress Milla Jovovich, to autograph his recent books for Marvel. But Mr. Aguirre-Sacasa, a relative newcomer, found himself seated next to Brian Michael Bendis, the prolific superstar behind "Daredevil" and the "New Avengers."

then later...

This month Mr. Aguirre-Sacasa's work will be on display again. His semiautobiographical comedy, "Based on a Totally True Story," opens on Tuesday at Manhattan Theater Club. It is a portrait of the artist as overextended dynamo, juggling romance, family and an unabashed pursuit of commercial success. He also has a short play in "Dread Awakening," a "Creepshow"-style anthology by various authors that runs through April 23 at the 45th Street Theater, while the Rattlestick Theater will present his 2003 alien-abduction drama, "Dark Matters," in October.

Interesting items taken from the article:
1) Aguirre-Sacasa's play, "Based on a Totally True Story," opens tomorrow. More info here.
2) His dad is running of Nicaragua

Photo copyright Shiho Fukada for The New York Times

Friday, April 07, 2006


Some Ohio-bred comicsters objected to some admissions to our recent write-up. Looks like we missed two cool things that you should check out next time you're in Buckeye country:
1) The Laughing Ogre
258 North High Street
Columbus OH 43214

2) SPACE (Small Press and Alternative Comics Expo)
It looks like a very cool convention. Somewhere along the lines of APE, SPX and the MoCCA Art Fest. It's May 13 and special guest include Dave Sim and Gerhard.

Bonus creator born in Ohio?
• Paul Pope
Link blogging!

Quick update on the results of Stephanie McMillan's online auction of her hilarious cartoon criticizing South Dakota state Sen. Bill Napoli's creepy antiabortion rhetoric: The strip raised $2,201! Proceeds will go to abortion providers in and around South Dakota, including Sacred Choices, the clinic Oglala Sioux President Cecelia Fire Thunder plans to place on sovereign tribal lands within S.D.

Of course, Napoli has been less than thrilled about McMillan's consciousness-raising efforts. "The cartoon generated a huge amount of filth, intolerable filth," he told the Rapid City Journal. "Ninety-nine percent of the calls I got were just filth. I bet I didn’t talk to 20 or 25 people I could talk to. The rest were screaming obscenities before I could hang up."

By the time the Canadian cartoonist Hope Larson published her first graphic novel last year, she'd already been the toast of the independent comics underground for a while. Her early, handmade mini-comics staked out her conceptual territory: the world of dreams, where things are always becoming each other. (Some of them can be seen at her site.) "Salamander Dream," though, was the comics debut of the year...

I'm on a Marvel press conference call right now with Mark Millar. Civil War...
No real news, but it's always fun to hear someone talk in a Scottish accent.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

What's the (exclamation) Point?

Here's the results from my exclamation point tally:
In the May issue I found 349 exclamation points. 349. Again, this isn't counting direct quotes, ads, etc. Let's do some number crunching. 349 exclamation points. I counted 128.5 pages of editorial content that issue. That's 2.7 exclamation points per page, NOT including ones found in direct quotes.

I remember reading a piece in the NY Times a few years ago by Elmore Leonard, and I don't think he'd approve:
"Keep your exclamation points under control.
You are allowed no more than two or three per 100,000 words of prose. If you have the knack of playing with exclaimers the way Tom Wolfe does, you can throw them in by the handful."

PS: Mike Thompson, email me your address so I can ship you your prize

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Eisner Award Nominations Announced
Tony Harris is nominated for four awards, primarily for his work on EX MACHINA. To see his thoughts and process on Ex Machina in a rare interview, check out CF's feature interview with the entire art team. It's as behind-the-scenes as you can get.

Read how EX MACHINA became an Eisner nominee

Congrats to all the nominees.
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WIZARD! BY! THE! NUMBERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Last week I was flipping through the latest issue of Wizard (gotta keep up with what everyone else is doing). I noticed something that I've seen before, but for some reason this time it really stood out. Exclamation points! Boy, there's a lot of them in that magazine. I was so amazed by the number of them that I decided to count them all. To be fair, I didn't count the ad pages and nor did I count an exclamation point that occured in a direct quote from someone else.

Anyone care to guess how many I found?
Person with the closest guess before tomorrow wins a copy of Gotham Central #1, autographed by Michael Lark.


Tuesday, April 04, 2006

One of these things looks like the other

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The latest issue of Paper Cutter from Tugboat Press vs the Nov. 1999 Esquire.
Damn you, Internet Explorer
So, it looks like we're still having a few cross-platform conversion issues with Internet Explorer for Mac and PC. If you're using IE, why? Especially on mac - WHY? Switch to Safari or Firefox. And for those PC users...our very talented web team of Brad and Brandon are working out the kinks now.

I appreciate your patience.

Monday, April 03, 2006


I wanted to remind you about MoCCA & Comic Foundry's Annual Networking Mixer is tonight!

There will be friends, drinks, new faces, collaborations, raffle prizes and a chance to strengthen the already great New York comics community. In addition, we'll be celebrating the launch of Comic Foundry's new online magazine, which is now live. Check it out even if you can't make it tonight at

I hope to see you there! Bring your comic friends!

When: Tonight, 6:30 and beyond
Where: MoCCA - 594 Broadway (between Houston and Prince), Suite 401
Questions: Call 212.254.3511 or email

Sunday, April 02, 2006


It's my pleasure to announce that Chris Allen, 2006 Eisner judge, is joining CF as Features Editor. He's already contributed a lot thus far and I look forward to more. You can see the results in the next issue.
And so another comics blog is born.

Why? Why another comic blog? Well, we at Comic Foundry just relaunched our entire operation. We went from updating the site once or twice a week to a monthly online magazine. Our content is now more broad, but also greater in quality and quantity. Our old format was fine, but I think our readers deserved something extra, something with more weight. This blog will serve as a gateway for CF in between each issue. We'll have updates, news and other assorted items of intrigue. And so here we are.

What's this new magazine all about? So glad you asked. Our mission statement:
Comic Foundry strives to be the magazine the comic world deserves. It checks fandom at the door and instead brings a respect for the industry and the readers. With diverse coverage that spans all genres and mediums, we aim to bring our readers unique stories, presented in a unique way. We have an ear to the underground and a finger on the pulse of the mainstream, and provide opportunities for both. Comic Foundry combines analysis with the aspiring and molds wit with wisdom. In short, it's your comic magazine.

Check us out, there's something for everyone. Yes, even you.